New This Month

Hazelnut Thumbprints


These crispy, crunchy, nutty delights are perfect for the holidays.

  • Servings: 24
  • Yield: Makes about 2 dozen


  • 1/2 cup (1 stick) unsalted butter, softened
  • 1/2 cup plus 2 tablespoons sugar
  • 1 large egg, separated, each part lightly beaten
  • 1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
  • 1 1/4 cups all-purpose flour
  • 1/8 teaspoon coarse salt
  • 1/2 cup toasted skinned hazelnuts, ground
  • Strawberry jam, for filling


  1. Preheat oven to 325 degrees. Put butter and 1/2 cup sugar in the bowl of an electric mixer fitted with the paddle attachment; mix on medium speed until pale and fluffy, about 3 minutes. Add egg yolk and vanilla, and mix well. Reduce speed to low. Add flour and salt, and mix until just combined. Refrigerate dough for 2 hours.

  2. Stir together toasted hazelnuts and remaining 2 tablespoons sugar in a small bowl. Roll dough into 1-inch balls; dip balls in egg white, then in hazelnut-sugar mixture. Space 1 inch apart on baking sheets lined with parchment paper. Press down center of each ball with your thumb. Bake for 10 minutes. Remove from oven; press down centers again with the end of a wooden spoon. Return to oven. Bake cookies until golden brown, 8 to 10 minutes more. Let cool slightly on sheets on wire racks. Fill each center with jam.

Cook's Notes

To toast the nuts for these cookies, place them on a rimmed baking sheet in an oven heated to 350 degrees for 10 minutes; then transfer them to a clean kitchen towel and rub them until the skins come off. Grind them in a food processor.

Reviews Add a comment

  • weasel_15cool
    16 MAR, 2015
    I made these last night and they were great. I used all of the ingredients and the exact measures and made about 25 cookies. They did not end up flat but the balls I made were a bit smaller than 1 inch. I cooled them for about 5 min and added Nutella to one half and a plum preserve to the other. Honestly, the plum was better. I think that using a slightly sower jam makes the cookies better because they are very sweet and Nutella makes them even sweeter.
  • Raven2255
    12 DEC, 2012
    As the previous poster posted, a 1 inch ball makes a HUGE cookie. If you want a thumbprint the right size, reduce the cookie balls by half - you also get more cookies. Also - warm the jelly in the microwave before filling them and you get perfect fills =)
  • csw2008
    21 DEC, 2011
    I have the answer to why the cookies can be flat. You need to make the ball very small. I'd say half the size they suggest. This yields the correct size thumbprint cookie, and they are nice and full, not flat at all. If you roll the ball too large, they start to get flat. Keep them nice and small, and no problems! Enjoy they are yummy. I used toasted walnuts instead of the hazelnuts.
  • Fanzeela
    15 NOV, 2011
    These are the best thumbprint cookies ever! Just a couple of tips - fill the cookies with the jam after the first 10 minutes of baking after you make the indentation with back of wooden spoon. Baking the jam results in a better taste & easier to store. I also make batches of these cookies & freeze to give as Christmas gifts packaged in cello bags.
  • Misssi
    30 NOV, 2010
    How long can you store? If I bake this week may I store to Xmas?
  • Madhi
    7 JUN, 2010
    I just got done baking a batch. I cut the recipe in half because my mixer is broken so a little dough would be easier to mix by hand. I didn't have hazelnuts at home so I omitted that step. I also added a pinch of baking soda because was afraid they would be flat since I mixed them by hand. I got fifteen 2" (once they came out) perfect cookies and filled them with strawberry jam. These were crispy and buttery and amazing. GREAT RECIPE! Will be making them again!
  • christinabrady
    31 JAN, 2010
    great cookie! highly recommended! dont listen to the negative comments these were fantastic!!
  • kathycurrentfamilysingerknitter
    30 NOV, 2009
    Also, use FRESH flour and ingredients. Don't use year old flour!!!
  • kathycurrentfamilysingerknitter
    30 NOV, 2009
    maybe add a tsp of baking powder or baking soda so the cookies won't be flat.
  • summerlange
    31 MAR, 2009
    Made these for the first time and they are wonderful. I was a little afraid they might not turn out after reading some of the comments, but they came out just like the recipe said. Next time I am definitely using Nutella. These are going on the must have list for Christmas cookies.